How We Learn

Have you ever thought about how you learn? We’re in academia, so I’m sure at one point or another you’ve spent a little bit of time wondering if you could be studying more efficiently or wondering if you’ll retain information you just learned.  Given how crunched we are for time, I know more than once I’ve spent a few precious moments trying to determine the most efficient way to maximize my learning and retention.

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Why You Should Consider Opening Up Your School’s Professional Development

Why You Should Consider Opening Up Your School’s Professional Development

Today’s topic is so great for our We Learn Together Blog because it gets to the very heart of why this blog was created. We Learn Together. As we all know, in life we don’t always have all the answers. Sometimes we need to lean on other people to help us solve problems. This is where the concept of “opening up,”  or making professional development (PD) classes available to all teachers can be extremely  important and useful.

Many K-12 schools offer PD classes for their own teachers, but did you know, these schools are missing out on a variety of opportunities by not allowing outside teachers in their classes? We will discuss some of those reasons in this post. Continue reading “Why You Should Consider Opening Up Your School’s Professional Development”

How to Open a School Exclusive Class to All Teachers

How to Open Up a School Exclusive Class To All Teachers

In a previous post, I wrote about the reasons why your school or district should consider opening up your school exclusive K-12 professional development classes to all teachers. This post is a short follow up to assist interested instructors on how to open up their professional development class. The process is simple and doesn’t take any additional effort. If you would like to know more about school-exclusive classes, read this post.

Once you or your school/district has made the decision to open up your professional development class to all teachers, you fill out the course approval paperwork.  If you have previously offered the class, then this process is the same as it always is. The only difference is, you would let Barb Schumacher, professional development coordinator, know you want the class available to all teachers.

From there, our office does the rest of the work (you still have to prepare for and teach the class though; we don’t do that part for you). If you want to know what kinds of things our office does to notify teachers that your class is available, please continue reading. Continue reading “How to Open a School Exclusive Class to All Teachers”

Ways to Promote Your Class

girl with social media all around

Secretly, we all do things we hope will end up being successful beyond our wildest dreams. Because, really, does anyone start something with the intention that it will be mediocre at best? NO – even if we don’t say it, we are not hoping for a mediocre outcome. We want the opportunity to say, “Look what I did; I did that!”

Instructors for our K-12 professional development classes are no different. If you go to the effort to become so good at your topic that you are qualified to offer a professional development opportunity, you design the class, write a topical outline, develop a syllabus, and address a rubric for grading, it’s fair to assume you are going to want some guarantee that you will have students in your class, right?

I have been marketing K-12 professional development classes for almost 14 years and in those years I have seen one thing in common with our most successful classes. Well, actually there are quite a few things in common, but there is one main thing these instructors do different. Continue reading “Ways to Promote Your Class”

Caring for Yourself in Uncertain Times

Caring for Yourself in Uncertain Times

For most of us, what was considered our normal daily way of life has changed dramatically over the past few weeks. Schools have gone to on-line instruction, people are being told to use social distancing and to shelter in place, and restaurants have been forced to close. These changes are bound to lead to a variety of intense feelings for many of us, with those people already suffering from anxiety and other mental health concerns likely to have more difficulties coping during this crisis. Continue reading “Caring for Yourself in Uncertain Times”

School Exclusive Classes: What are they?

School exclusive Classes: what are they?

The term “school exclusive class” isn’t a term most of our k-12 professional development participants hear much about. That is because it is really a term we use in our office to describe professional development being offered for an exclusive audience. “District exclusive” is another way to describe these classes. But school districts may refer to them as partner courses or simply stated as, “credit offered through NDSU.”

While you may not need to know the industry jargon for these classes, it is useful to know about these type of classes. Let’s break down what a school exclusive class really is. Continue reading “School Exclusive Classes: What are they?”

Three Final Tips for Making the Most of Your Professional Development

3 final tips for making the most out of your professional development

This three-part series of posts on making the most of your professional development has been really fun to write. I enjoy letting you in on little secrets that will help you stretch your dollar or time a little further when it comes to your professional development. Actually, that is one of my secret superhero skills. My mom taught me a lot about making the most of every dollar. Along the way, I’ve also become fascinated by how to stretch every last second out of each day. (Because 100 years or less is not enough time to accomplish all the things I want to do.) What I’ve found is these two concepts often go hand-in-hand.

If you haven’t read my other two posts in this series, you really should check out my three tips about understanding your professional development needs and my three tips about using the timing of your professional development to your advantage.

This third post in the series, offers three final tips focusing on less obvious ways of making use of your professional development.

Here are my three tips.

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What to Think About When Designing a Professional Development Class

What to Think About When Designing a Professional Development Class

Designing a professional development class can seem daunting at first, especially if you’ve never offered one before. If you are reading this post, (Thank you for reading!) you have probably thought about offering a class and are hoping for a bit of inspiration or words of advice. Awesome! You are in the right place; my goal is to inspire you.

Let’s get started with what you need to think about when designing a professional development class. Continue reading “What to Think About When Designing a Professional Development Class”